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Prospect of progress must not be ruined: PM

Prospect of progress must not be ruined: PM

DHAKA:  Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina yesterday called upon all to remain careful against the conspiracy to ruin the aspiration of the people and prospect of building a happy and prosperous Bangladesh.

“We want to take forward the country, but there are still some people who are out to push the country back. The countrymen must remain careful about them,” she said in a discussion organized by Bangladesh Awami League marking 42nd martyrdom anniversary of Father of the Nation Bangabandhu Sheikh Mujibur Rahman.

Sheikh Hasina who is also the president of Bangladesh Awami League presided over the function held at Bangabandhu International Conference Centre here yesterday afternoon.

Sheikh Hasina said Bangladesh was derailed from the democratic track through the killing of Bangabandhu. But, after 15 years the democratic process was restored through ousting the autocratic government in 1990.

But the farcical election conducted under the government of Khaleda Zia on February 15, 1996 dashed the process again, she said adding that people of the country overthrew the that illegal government within 45 days and brought Awami League to power after 21 years.

“People of Bangladesh got the real benefit of democracy when Awami League assumed power in 1996 and Awami League government showed that welfare of the people is possible if the government works sincerely for the people.”

Advisory Council members of Bangladesh Awami League Amir Hossain Amu and Tofail Ahmed, presidium members Matiya Chowdhury and Mohammad Nasim, central committee member of the party Simin Hossain Rimi, journalist and columnist Abed Khan, noted dramatist and chairman of the advisory committee of the party on cultural affairs Ataur Rahman and Professor Syed Anwar Hossain of Dhaka University and general secretary Obaidul Kader took part in the discussion.

Minister for Cultural Affairs Asaduzzaman Noor recited the first poem on Bangabandhu authored by Moulvi Sheikh Halim of Tungipara in Urdu after his martyrdom and its translation into Bangla by Nirmalendu Goon while Minister for Science and technology Yafes Osman presented rhymes on Bangabandhu.

Pointing out the socioeconomic progress of Bangladesh over the last eight years of Awami League government, the Prime Minister said prospect has been created in the country to build a ‘Golden Bengal’ as dreamt by the Father of the Nation. So, the dream and aspiration should not be spoiled, she said.

Earlier, a minute’s silence was observed as a mark of profound respect to the memories of Father of the Nation Bangabndhu Sheikh Mujibur Rahman and other martyrs of the August 15 carnage, the four national leaders and those who embraced martyrdom in different movements of the country including the War of Liberation in 1971.

Paying her rich tributes to Father of the Nation Bangabandhu Sheikh Mujibur Rahman, Sheikh Hasina said the great leader had led the Bengali nation in making a homeland of their own. “To make this happen, Bangabandhu had to fight for long 24 years and suffer in jail making his life endangered,” she added. The Prime Minister said that after losing her father, mother, brothers and other near and dear ones, she has nothing to desire and attain. “My only desire is changing the fate of the nation for which my father, mother and brothers laid down their lives,” she said.

“Every moment I remember my father’s dream and his life long struggle to give the people of Bangladesh a prosperous life and I do work purposely to achieve the goal,” she said.

Sheikh Hasina expressed her firm optimism that people of Bangladesh would celebrate the centenary of Bangabandhu’s birthday and golden jubilee of the Independence as a middle income country. It should be the pledge of every leader and worker of Awami League, she said.

Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina said economic emancipation of the people of Bangladesh was the prime and foremost goal of the struggle of Bangabandhu. For this he had sacrificed all happiness and pleasures of his life.

Bangabandhu wanted to make meaningful his struggle and sacrifice through ensuring the socioeconomic development of the people. Through his bold leadership and administrative capacity, Bangabandhu had built up Bangladesh as an independent state from the status of a Pakistani province in only three and a half years, she said.

The killing of Bangabandhu was not merely for overthrowing a regime, but it was aimed to destroy the spirit of the War of Liberation and take recourse to retaliation of the defeat of the anti-liberation forces in 1971. “Otherwise why they will kill my mother, minor brother and innocent women,” she asked.

Talking about the link of military dictator Ziaur Rahman with the August 15 massacre, the Prime Minister said that he gave shelter to the killers, destroyed the spirit of the Independence, rehabilitated the war criminals and destroyed the ideals on which the country was established.

“Mustaque and Zia had direct link with the killers and conspirators. So the killers made Mustaque president of the country and set Zia at the helm of the army soon after the massacre,” the prime minister said adding that from August 15, 1975 to 1996 it seemed to be an offence to fight for country’s liberation.

She lamented that the killers of Bangabandhu were rewarded time and again. Some people had floated political organizations with those killers. Barrister Moinul Hossain constituted a political party with Bangabandhu murderers Bazlul Huda and Shariyar, Zia made some of the killers country’s prime minister, minister and advisor.

General Ershad floated Freedom Party with the killers and allowed them to contest the presidential election while Khaleda Zia allowed Bangabandhu’s self-confessed killers to be parliament members and made one of them Leader of the Opposition.

Sheikh Hasina said Bangladesh is progressing as democracy persists. Conspirators became active to foil the democratic system, she said urging the party workers and leaders to remain careful about the ploy.

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